Today brought news about retail inflation for Joe Public. The U.S. Labor Department has reported its Consumer Price Index for the month of September, and the numbers are looking as though inflation is still contained at the retail level. The headline CPI reading was +0.6%, but the core CPI, which excludes food and energy, rose only by 0.1% in September.
Bloomberg was looking for a consensus of +0.5% on the headline CPI and +0.2% on the core CPI. Dow Jones also had estimates of +0.5% on the headline and +0.2% on the Core CPI. To show just how much energy plays an impact, gasoline price were up by 0.7% and total energy prices were up by 4.5%. This would almost leave the public unscathed from major drought conditions and the impact of food, but the fear is still there that prices will be higher in the months ahead.
Today's reading is good in that it is not overly inflationary. That being said, the Federal Reserve also has telegraphed that it would be willing to be a bit looser on the 2% inflation target if monetary policy was helping the employment picture more than what we have seen so far.
JON C. OGG